Southwest Airlines has announced that it will launch daily non-stop flights between Los Angeles and the Costa Rican city of Liberia. The announcement comes almost eight months after the airliner started flying from Baltimore to the Costa Rican capital San Jose.
The carrier expects to operate the service from Terminal 2 of the Los Angeles International Airport. The company has yet to receive approval from the government for its new flight route; however, it is confident the approval will be granted.
In a statement, the company said the service would likely begin in April 2016. Last year, the company set aside $500 million as part of the investment to modernize Los Angeles International Airport’s terminal 1, which is expected to be completed by fiscal year 2018.
However, the low cost carrier announced that the new baggage claim facility and ticketing lobby will be operational next year. Upon completion of the new terminal, the airline hopes to launch additional services.
“This new link for our customers in the LA Basin to Costa Rica’s growing resort and ecotourism region will bring to the market a value only Southwest can offer, with bags fly free, no change fees, and low fares, all alongside our famously friendly customer service,” said Andrew Watterson, Southwest Airlines Senior Vice President of Network & Revenue Management.
The carrier says that by summer 2016, its nine California airports will offer a combined peak weekday schedule of 678 departures to destinations across the United States, Mexico, and Costa Rica. Already, the Dallas-based carrier is serving a dozen destinations across Latin America and the Caribbean from a dozen gateway airports on the U.S. mainland.
“This new international flight will contribute to the expanding relationship between Southern California and Latin America while bringing over $600 million annually to our local economy and supporting thousands of jobs for Angelenos,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti in a press release.